Right then! I’d heard about this film when it came out, saw all the adverts, got hooked on the concept – the works. Thing is, I’d not seen it until about a week ago – so what did I think?
Well, first and foremost, the plot was actually pretty good, so long as you ignore the bit at the end that leads to the obvious follow-up film. By that, I mean, right up to the idea that the egg exists, the plot is great. You’ve got a kid being trained to become the leader of a fleet designed to attack the home-planet of an alien race known as the Formics, with all sorts of challenges forcing him to develop himself, his tactics and forge friendships with other children like him, but not as good as him. They train, practice fighting the aliens and in their final test, actually succeed in wiping out all the life on the home-planet… Before finding out that the test was in fact real and instead of pretending to kill the aliens, they had in-fact wiped them out.
That’s where the good bit ends. For me, ending there and leaving it with Ender working out how to cope with genocide would have been a good choice. Sadly, that’s not the case. Instead, the film continues to bring us an alien egg and the final living alien dying on us, with Ender deciding to take it and try to find a place for it to start a new home-planet for the Formics.
That’s just cruddy, to me. I don’t know why they would do that – sure, the books ends like that, but if there’s anything that the media has taught me, it is that films don’t have to stick to the book to be good adaptations. They can be changed to suit the film, and the audience. I don’t agree with it, but it’s true. Why couldn’t they just do that?
Other than that, though, it’s great. The acting is fantastic – it’s nice to see Harrison Ford being a jackass, and Ben Kingsley is good at being an Aussie. He’s got the accent to a tee, at any rate. Visually, the effects are darn good, with the images of the home-planet being just absolutely spectacular. The colours were so vivid and awesome I kind of got a few shivers whilst watching it. True story!
So, I liked the film – I found the ending disappointing, but I did like the film.